I Talk of Dreams

“We are such stuff as dreams are made on”, says Prospero, in Shakespeare’s The Tempest.  I have a good friend, a very experienced Shakespearean actor, who would happily change that to “made of”, claiming that otherwise nobody understands what it means. I disagree, for more reasons than I care to enumerate.  But I will say this, we ARE such stuff as dreams are made on, we have imaginations, we thrive on metaphors and fables, fiction and mystery. We constantly adjust the way we use words; we invent new words and new ways of using old words.  We hear someone speaking words we’ve never heard before, and we figure out for ourselves what they might mean long before it occurs to ask us …

Did My Heart Love Till Now?

My students hear those words a lot these days, whenever I need to demonstrate a particular teaching point that involves placing my voice at the disposal of sounds that combine to make words that combine to make phrases, sentences – in other words, text. It makes a change from “the quality of mercy…” which is usually the first text that comes to mind when I am teaching – “to be, or not to be” is usually the second. There are many reasons why I choose these texts, not least being because I am so unlikely to ever be cast as Portia or Hamlet, so it’s an opportunity for me to play with these words. You’d be forgiven for assuming that …

Fresh Voice! The Acting Class 2012

The next block of voice and acting classes will take place on Sunday mornings, from 9.30 am to 12.30 pm.  7th October – 25th November The Voice Class integrates pure voicework with physicality, creative expression and performance technique. The Voice Class works with the movement of breath in the moving body, to facilitate passionate, nuanced, intelligent self-expression and communication. The overall objective is BEING consistently and totally present IN the act of sounding the VOICE. Join us for seven  three hour sessions, exploring your vocal potential with and without text. Contemporary and classic texts. “How wonderful is the human voice! It is indeed the organ of the soul!” Longfellow Pure voice, vocal maintenance, storytelling, public speaking, audition monologues, text analysis Cost: 7 (3 hour) sessions: …

When Thoughts Collide

Since sending out the flyers, newsletters and emails promoting the new workshop, “Shakespeare’s Archetypes”, I been thinking. This is too important, and too much fun to limit to a two day workshop.  So I have devised a new and cunning plan (to quote Baldrick). My plan is to call for Expressions of Interest.  Anyone who is interested in doing this workshop is invited to send me their cv and availability.  As soon as there are 6 people ready and willing at the same time, we’ll do it. But be warned, this is not for the faint-hearted. The only way to create theatre that is exciting and dangerous is to take risks. In order to do that, we need a structure we …

Voice Alive!

I recently committed myself to take part in a three week intensive, full time clown training course with the fabulous Ira Seidenstein.  Terrified that I might totally exhaust myself, and run out of beans to do anything for the rest of the year, in fact I came out at the end quite invigorated and fired up, ready to take on anything 2012 can throw at me. We worked with Shakespeare’s text, some of it placed in the mouths of actual clowns, some that you might never suspect of being clowns ‘as characters’, but then what is a character?  It’s a person. And if you are the person playing that character, and you happen to be a clown, then way-hey to go! For …